10:41 PM CST on Thursday, March 10, 2005 http://www.dallasnews.com/sharedcon...cbd18.html
Guard Marco Rivera, who received a $9 million
signing bonus when he signed a five-year, $20
million contract with the Cowboys last week, had
surgery to repair a herniated disk in his back Thurs-
day, two sources said.
Rivera, 32, who had a procedure to repair the disk
Thursday morning, is expected to go home today
and start the rehabilitation process.
The sources said the recovery time is expected to
take 3-5 weeks, which means he should be fine for
the start of training camp in July. That time table
could also have him ready for the club's veteran
mini-camp in June, though it's unlikely the Cowboys
would push him to participate in that camp.
Rivera suffered the injury on Tuesday, when he was
in Baltimore to attend the 27th annual Ed Block Cour-
Each NFL team has a player selected by his team-
mates for displaying commitments to the principles
of courage and sportsmanship, while serving as
inspirations in their locker rooms and communities.
Rivera, known for his toughness, received his award
for his 2004 season with Green Bay.
The sources said Rivera suffered the injury on Tues-
day, when he felt a twinge in his leg, while jogging on
a treadmill. The leg tightened during the course of the
day and he phoned the Cowboys' training staff.
He had an MRI on Wednesday and a slight bulge was
discovered in his lower back.
Darren Woodson suffered a similar injury last off-sea-
son, and missed the entire season. He announced his
retirement in December. It was the second surgery to
repair a herniation for Woodson and that complicated
his recovery. The sources said this is the first time
Rivera has had this type of surgery.